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bcsa Mar 17th, 2015 06:00 AM

Brittany (Perros-Guirec) to Dordogne - Itinerary, Accommodations, Stops?
Potential Itinerary:
2 nights in Perros-Guirec area
1 night in Carnac or Guerande area
1 night further along the route to Dordogne area
We would like to spend 2 nights near the Pink Granite Trail to experience the Brittany coast. Any suggestions for accommodations in a good location, overlooking the water?
It seems it will then take 2 nights at 2 different stops on the road to get to the Dordogne area. We would like to know if there are "not to be missed" places we should see along the way. We are interested in the coastal route.
Would stops in Quimper, Pont-Aven, Belon, and Carnac be a good idea? Other suggestions? Where would a good place to spend the first night be?
Any ideas for stops on the 2nd day of driving to the Dordogne or places to spend that night?
We are not sure how long each day of driving (with stops) will be, but we hope to drive no more than 5-6 hours a day.
Thank you in advance for your input.

StuDudley Mar 17th, 2015 07:04 AM

You really need about 4-5 more days for this trip. We spent 2 weeks near the Pink Rocks area a few years ago - and we were busy every day. Just walking the Pink Rocks trail consumed 3/4 of a day. Then there's lots of other stuff to see in the area. Here is something I wrote about this region. The Stars (*) are the rating given to the site by the Michelin Green Guide. If I liked it better or less, I'll add a + or -.

We think the northern Brittany coast is the most scenic coastline in France. You will have enjoyed some pretty coast along the Cote d’Emeraude, but the coast you will see in the next several days is more dramatic.

Just east of Plouha, there are several “pointes” that offer spectacular views. This coastline of Brittany reminds us of the beautiful Big Sur coast in California – near where we live. The best thing to do in this immediate region is to just drive along the small roads that jut out from the D786 and admire the views, take walks along the cliff tops, and even hike down to the beach if you find an access. Don’t miss the Pointe de Plouha, Port Moguer, Plage Bonaparte, and the GR 34 (hiking path) north of Plage Bonaparte. Then continue northwest along the D786 and visit Pointe de Minard*+, Pointe de Bilfort*+ and the Pointe de l’Arcouste**.

Ile de Brehat**
At Pointe de l’Arcouest, take a boat over to the Ile. Allow about ¾ of a day for a visit. We really enjoyed walking around this island, exploring several coves, and admiring some of the architecture of the buildings. As you could imagine, the views are quite amazing. Look up BREHAT in the GG.

Where to stay in this region???
This area has several B&Bs and some hotels. I would try to find a place near Penvenan or Treguier. I would not recommend staying in Perros-Guirec – we didn’t find it to be very charming & there is a little too much traffic. After spending 2 weeks in a gite on the beautiful coast, we dreaded driving through Perros-Guirec to get to other sites.

Hotel Kastell Dinech near Treguier

Or stay at a Castel Beau Site on the beach at Ploumanach, at the start of the Granite Rose walk (see next day).
We had dinner at this hotel – and although my fish was overcooked, the rest of the meal was fine.

Stay in this region for 3 nights.

Day 15 & 16

I had an itinerary planned for each day in the week when we stayed on the coast for 2 weeks in this region. However, about day 2 I abandoned the itinerary. On some days the tides were in and there was water about 50 meters away from our gite. At other times of the day, you could not see any water. I therefore had to consult a tides table and re-arranged the itinerary so that the tides would be “in” on days we took coastal drives, and “out” on other days when the tide would not be covering a road that we planned to travel on. The tides are quite dramatic here!!!

Cote de Granit Rose**+
Ploumanach** See PLOUMANACH in the GG. This is the heart of the Pink Granite Coast. Park in the lot marked “P” (in the GG) close to the tourist office. Pick up a map at the tourist office and walk to the beach. Follow the walking trails through the pink rocks – it is very scenic and not an over demanding walk/hike. You will probably take loads of pictures. We have actually walked this route on several occasions, at different times of the day. When we dined at the Castel Beau Site, we walked along the paths at sunset before dinner. It is most remarkable on a sunny day (if you have an option of when to visit).

Visit Lannion* See LANNION in the GG. However, do not visit Lannion on a Sunday, or Monday morning when all the shops will be closed. Some shops may open on Monday afternoon.

Treguier** See TREGUIER in the GG. We didn’t visit Treguier until later in our stay in this region. I figured that the GG gave it a high rating because of its Cathedral. We actually found it to be our favorite village in the area. They have a pleasant market on Wednesday, and there are some half-timbered buildings on Pl Martray & R. Renan. Just about every city, village, and hamlet in France has a “Monument to the Morts” commemorating tlocal people killed in various wars involving France. About 90% of the names on the monuments throughout France are from WWI – many from one family. We make it a habit of always pointing out these monuments and perhaps even visiting them when we drive through a town. The monument in Treguier is the most “touching”, in our opinion. Try to find it – a simple stone statue of a weeping Breton widow, rather than the “usual” combat figure or obelisk.

From Penvenan, drive north to Bugueles – bearing left on the minor roads. Bugueles is where our gite is located. If you found the “correct” minor road, when you get to the water (or end of the road if the tides are out) you will spot a large house at the end of a gravel driveway. At high tide, this house is completely surrounded by water. At low tide, there is no water to be seen at all. We saw several pictures of this house in photographic studios located in the region. We took several pictures too. Our gite is the last building on the right as this paved road ends and you see the large house surrounded/not-surrounded by water. Get out of the car & walk around the area a bit. A GR goes directly in front of our gite on the water/no water side. After viewing the house, drive east & then clockwise along the coast near the Pointe du Chateau (see the 309 map). This is a very picturesque area and you won’t see many tourists. Continue on this route to Plouguiel and then on to Treguier. As you cross the water inlet into Treguier, you will see more effects of the tides. Our Gite

Castles we visited:
Ch Kerouzere*
Ch Roche-Jagu*
Manoir de Tronjoly
Ch Rosanbo*

Our favorite restaurant in this region was the Michelin 1 star La Ville Blanche near the village of Ville Blanche

Day 17
Switch to map # 308
Head towards Morlaix and visit Morlaix*. Follow the walking itinerary described in the GG. Some half-timbered buildings are scattered around town. There are some interesting shops on Grand Rue – but again, don’t visit Morlaix on a Sunday or Monday. Visit the Maison de la Reine Anne.

The town of Roscoff is rated highly in some guide books. It does not rate any stars in the GG, and we didn’t find it to be that interesting either - compared to the hundreds of other villages we’ve visited in France.

After Morlaix, get on the N12 heading west and stop at St Thegonnec**. See ENCLOS PAROISSIAUX** in the GG. Read about a “Calvary” in the GG.
Visit St Thegonnec**
Visit Guimiliau**
Visit Lampaul-Guimiliau*

End of the thing I wrote previously.

Regarding your drive to the Dordogne.

I don't think you will encounter any coastline on the way from Brittany to the Dordogne that's any more scenic than northern & western Brittany. And it would certainly take you more than 2 nights/2 1/2 days to do this trip at a pace that would allow you to enjoy anything. If you take the fast/non-scenic Autoroute all the way - it will take you 9 1/2 to 10 hours of driving in a car.

Personally, I would forget a leisurely trip along the southern coast of Brittany, and just stay in Vannes or Nantes the first night & La Rochelle the second.

Stu Dudley

annhig Mar 17th, 2015 07:15 AM

I don't think that I can compete with Stu's itineraries, so i'm not going to try.

But he's right - you need more time here - at least another day.

google maps suggests that it's a 7 hour drive from Perros-Guirec to Brive so with that in mind, even if it's closer to 10 hour as Stu suggests, you might split it into a 2 day drive with one stop rather than 2.

alternatively it may be possible to fly from Rennes to Bordeaux or Bergerac - have you thought of that?

StuDudley Mar 17th, 2015 08:58 AM says it is 9 hrs to Sarlat. I find google to be a little "optimistic". With anything that long, I always add about 10% to cover pottie breaks, lunch, back-ups at toll booths, and the un-avoidable "deviation".

I agree with annhig about making it in a one-nighter instead of two. Spend the extra day in the Pink Rocks area and then drive 5 1/2 hrs to La Rochelle & stay overnight. Next morning, spend some more time in La Rochelle and then drive 4 1/2 hrs to Sarlat la Caneda (or wherever you are staying in the Dordogne).

Stu Dudley

annhig Mar 17th, 2015 09:46 AM

and book your overnight stop ahead of time. that way you're not tempted to drive too far, and you you can take your time and look at things along the way in the knowledge that your hotel is waiting for you.

bcsa Mar 17th, 2015 01:18 PM

Thank you SO much for all the helpful ideas and great suggestions! I appreciate your time and input which will help immensely in planning this trip.

annhig Mar 17th, 2015 02:17 PM

ah - that's nice, bcsa. we would just like you to have as nice a trip as possible!

kja Mar 17th, 2015 08:04 PM

We would like to spend 2 nights near the Pink Granite Trail to experience the Brittany coast. Any suggestions for accommodations in a good location, overlooking the water?"

I LOVED the Hotel des Rochers, which still seems to get very good reviews:
I also had an excellent dinner there. :-)

bcsa Mar 24th, 2015 06:02 PM

Thank you for your suggestions and information which have been of tremendous help!

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